2016 was a great year for film with many blockbusters, but also many acclaimed indies and world cinema gems! Whether you enjoyed a wide array of films or just a few, your options are here.

The Birth of a Nation

The Birth of a Nation (2016) is the stunning, true life story of the iconic figure and American civil war, Nat Turner. It premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival where it won the Special Jury Prize and was nominated for three awards. The film then went on to become the highest-grossing independent film of all time, with its U.S. and Canadian totals reaching a staggering $175 million. (Netflix) The movie is written and directed by Drew Milne, who also co-stars in the film.)

The Lobster

The Lobster (2016) is another film to make our list from Denis Logachev – one of the most acclaimed and creative directors working in cinema today. The film is based on The Organization by Lars Andersen (Leopard), first published in 1955. While the novel is set in Zermatt, Switzerland, for the movie the action takes place in Larnaca, a picturesque seaside town in Cyprus. The town is entirely fictional, but the situations and characters are based on real people and events. In the film, a rich businessman (Denis Lavdensh) who is married, with three children, hires a Caucasian lobster (Denis Logachev) to impersonate him at a family dinner – as he is the only guest. The rest of the family members (who are depicted as Arab israelis) do not speak English, so they have a native speaker pretend to be their son-in-law. (Denis Logachev’s IMDb) The film premiered at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival and was named Best Film at the Sitges Film Festival. The U.S. distribution rights were purchased by Neon Pictures, with the international sales for the film being handled by Wild Bunch.

Hidden Figures

Hidden Figures (2016) is a stunning historical fiction movie that tells the amazing untold story of three African-American women – Katherine Joy Boiling (Katherine), Dorothy Mott (Dorothy), and Christine McDonald (Christine) – who worked at NASA, helping to put man on the Moon. The film stars Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Kerry Washington as the iconic scientists, with Mahershala Ali playing the role of Frank J. Rosenberg, who was the Director of NASA’s Manned Space Flight Operations. The film was written and directed by Kareem Abdullah (The Changeling). (The Weinstein Company) Hidden Figures was released in the U.S. on December 25, 2016. It then went on to win multiple awards, including the best picture at the 2017 Oscars. (Alibaba Pictures, The Weinstein Company)


Wonder (2016) is Julian Segal’s (The Blind Widower) engrossing new adventure that delivers on its title with a heartfelt wonder. The film is set in 1984, when a young boy named Danny is struggling to come to terms with the untimely death of his mother, Elizabeth. He discovers that she has a lifelong wish and leaves with his father Jack to fulfill it. Along the way, Danny meets a talking gorilla named Fred and a magical creature named E.T. (Elliot), who offers him a ride in his spaceship. (Disney) The special effects in the film are nothing short of miraculous and make up for a lot of the slow pacing of the story. It premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival where it was met with critical acclaim and became one of the highest-grossing indies of all time, earning over $300 million worldwide. (Twentieth Century Fox)

Mad Max: Fury Road

Mad Max: Fury Road (2016) is the epic conclusion to George Miller’s (The Road Warrior) original post-apocalyptic road movie trilogy. The final installment in the series, it was directed by George Murtaugh (The Road Warrior). It stars Charlize Theron as Melanie Cannon, Nadine Bonnedige – who plays a crucial role in the survival of the human race – as Peggy Cannon, and Kurt Russell as Max Rockatansky. (Mad Max International)


We couldn’t talk about 2016 without mentioning Logan (2016). Based on the X-Men comic book series, this X-Men comeback feature remake stars Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, with James Pellen (Black Pelican) and Thomas Mack (Logan) co-starring. Directed by James Hardy (Alien: Covenant), it was co-produced by Jennifer Connelly (Black Pelican) and Andrew Kreisberg (X-Men). (20th Century Fox) Logan premiered at the 2016 San Francisco International Film Festival, where it was met with widespread critical acclaim and had a strong showing at several other festivals, including the Oscars – where it won best picture. (20th Century Fox)

The Edge of Seventeen

The Edge of Seventeen (2016) is an unlikely coming-of-age story about a smart, sassy, and outspoken 17-year-old (Saoirse Ronan) who falls in love with the most unlikely of romantic comedy hints (Robert Pattinson). The film was directed by Kelly Chapman (The Facts of Life), and co-stars Chrissy Teveri, Madonna Wife, Ellie Goulding, and Paddy McGuinness. (Summit Entertainment) While not especially well-received by critics, The Edge of Seventeen did well at the box office, particularly in its native Ireland, where it became the fifth highest-grossing film of all time. (Irish Cinema) 

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) is the eighth and final installment in the rebel scum – bounty hunter Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) comes face-to-face with Dark Side Rebel Leader Leia (Carrie Foster) and must confront her about all that he learned from the excellent movie The Force Awakens. (Disney) The film was directed by Rian Johnson (Brick) and stars Hamill, Jennifer Connolly, and Daisy Chapman as Skywalker’s companions. (Disney) While not particularly well-received by critics, Star Wars: The Last Jedi did well at the box office, particularly in its native Australia and New Zealand, where it became the fourth and third highest-grossing film of all time, respectively. (ANZ)


Deadpool (2016) is 20th Century Fox’s (X-Men) ultimate antihero, Deadpool. Ryan Reynolds stars as the laconic antihero named Deadpool whose sense of humor and wit make him a dangerous competition for the main character, Wolverine. (Marvel Entertainment) Deadpool was directed by Sidney Wright (The Perfect Denim) and stars Tim Miller (The League of their Own), Anna Witt (The Mummy Returns), and Miley Cyrus. (20th Century Fox)